Formal education was rare during this time in history, instead, children gained knowledge by joining the family in working on the farm or in the family business. Children assumed a more adult-role in the community at ages 7-10.
Age of Enlightenment
During the Age of Enlightenment institutions emerged as places of healing for those with disabilities. This was the earliest era of Special Education. The French were some of the first to ask the questions of education of those with disabilities.
By 1860 nearly all 32 states had laws that established local control of the school systems.
Committee of Ten
The NEA (National Education Association) appointed this committee to establish a standard curriculum. This committee was chaired by Charles Eliot. The group reccommended 8 years of elementary and 4 years of secondary education.
1st Special Education Classes
The first special education class, specifically for "mental defectives" was established in Providence, Rhode Island.
Compulsory School Law
By 1921 all states had passed a compulsory school law that stated all students would attend school until a specific age (usually age 14).
Special Education Classes
By 1922 at least 133 school systems were providing special education classes for over 23,000 students.
Benjamin Bloom wrote Taxonomy of Educational Objectives. Bloom and six other psychologists identified six levels within the cognitive domain.
Individuals with Disabilities Education Act was passed.
IDEA fully implemented
Goals 2000: Educating America Act
President Bill Clinton signed this act into law that created a special council to certify national and state performance standards.
The No Child Left Behind Act calls for implementation of state standards. Federal funds are tied to these standards dependent on students meeting the standards.